Daily Dolts: Proud of Being Asses

Fran Eaton saddles up again in the Marginalization Express to say she is proud that the Jill Stanek inquisition into Debbie Halvorson’s sex life including whether she had been raped occurred on Illinois Review:

Illinois Review proudly stands beside what’s right in the long run for our daughters. Call that “mean” if you will, but we won’t budge and we won’t let up.

Sort of like the Pastors on the quads at state universities, the distinction between being an ass and actually being productive is never considered.

The level of absurdity from Eaton and Stanek is hard to fathom. But let’s start with the stupidest line in the post:

It’s “mean” not to care for those uninformed young women whose bodies may become protected by the HPV vaccine, but whose damaged hearts and broken dreams due to promiscuity will take years to heal

No one is suggesting someone go out and be promiscuous. Suggesting that a vaccine is going to be the difference between a woman sleeping around or not tends to demonstrate just how deluded Fran Eaton is about the world. Furthermore, it implies those with HPV are somehow sluts. This is not new for the dynamic duo of denseness.

Perhaps most odd about the anger over this issue is the notion that the state mandate is going to end up in parents having to commit heroic acts of civil disobedience if they disagree withthe law. This is not true

Beginning August 1,
2009 a female student who is 11 or 12 years of age may not enter
any grade of a public, private, or parochial school unless the
child presents to the school proof of having received a human
papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination or, after having received the
information required to be provided by the Department of Public
Health under subsection (a) of Section 2e of the Communicable
Disease Prevention Act, the student’s parent or legal guardian
presents to the school a signed statement that the parent or
legal guardian has elected for the student not to receive the

In the time one could compose a blog post, one could write the note saying that the parent has elected to not have their daughter receive the vaccination.

The reasoning behind making it mandatory is that insurers then have to pay for the vaccination. I’m not sure if there is a reason why this is better than say making it a mandated service covered by health insurance, but the practical effect is minute.

It’s “mean” and destructive for state funds to be delegated to teaching comprehensive sex ed over the overall healthier choice of abstinence until marriage

This is the usual candard about how only abstinence education should be utilized since abstinence is the only 100 percent effective method to avoid disease or pregancy. This is true in a theoretical world, and also rather pointless given teenagers have been sexually active for thousands of years and the practical effectiveness is very low. Worse, it’s counterproductive since abstinence only programs may slightly delay the onset of sexual activity, but it also leads to young people taking fewer precautions when they do become sexually active.

Furthermore, abstinence education programs are medically bizarre often such as discouraging masturbation usually–something for males that has significant health benefits as Adam Carolla often called it, the prostate maintenance program as regular masturbation decreases the chances of prostate cancer. Is that taught in abstinence only programs? Not so much.

The larger problem being when teaching young people about sex, teaching them medically accurate and realistic scenarios is far more important than teaching them to do something that the vast majority of people will not follow nor have they ever followed.

I suppose it’s nice to live in a delusion, but it’s not very effective in determining public policy.

That said, tie the abstinence discussion to McCain and his recent claims to be all for abstinence only education and one laughs hysterically if they have read anything about John McCain as a young man.

The Nightingale's Song

The Nightingale’s Song

And here is where the real problem is. Stanek and Eaton are proudly anti-sex. They attack contraception along with the HPV vaccine because they seem to be in the camp with Alan Keyes of people who think that sex is only for pro-creation within a marriage. More power to them in their lives, but many of us have no problem with contraception.

Yet, even though they are a small minority, they are able to get themselves into news stories on a regular basis regardless of how offensive and bizarre their assertions are. Nothing they can say will marginalize them in the press even though they have successfully marginalized themselves politically. The same rule applies to other wingnuts like Peter Labarbera. They cannot do or say anything that will marginalize them in the media. In contrast, similar fringe elements on the left barely are ever covered–how many times does a news outlet look for Indymedia types to interview other than at a protest? That’s not a bad thing in itself, it’s that the mirror image is called upon and called upon regularly.

14 thoughts on “Daily Dolts: Proud of Being Asses

  1. The standard for determining the failure rate of a contraceptive technique is the percentage of women who get pregnant over the course of a year.

    For abstinence, the technique is effective only when you practice it. The failure rate is how many women fail to practice abstinence and get pregnant. (Btw, this is the same measurement used for natural birth control and coitus interruptus.)

    The main point here is one that AP makes in his post: getting a vaccine at age 11 or 12, before a child is sexually active, will have little or no effect on sexual activity as an adult. Nothing about the HPV vaccine or the related legislation would require society or schools to give a green light for sexual activity.

    In fact, the pro-choice community would be aghast at such a thought. The vaccine does not prevent a variety of STIs, and responsible sexual activity (be it abstinence, condoms, or other contraceptives) is still required to be healthy.

  2. AP,

    Is anyone else troubled by the implicit assumption underlying Fran and Jill’s position — that children would give in to wild sexual desires but for the threat of disease.

    What leads one to such a bizarre view of human sexuality, i.e. that it is overpowering and can only be bridled by the threat of sickness or death.

    Apparently when Eros is viewed as the enemy, Thanatos is viewed as a friend.

    — SCAM

  3. Well stated SCAM. I would add, though, that clearly Fran and Jill think that women have incredibly fragile psyches. They think that a woman who has sex with a man who does not marry her will be forever destroyed emotionally.

    That’s pretty sick in itself.

    On a more intellectual (than fran and jill could ever be) end, Amanda over at Pandagon did an excellent write up on the HPV thing some weeks ago, and on how the real fear for Fran and Jill’s ilk is that its much harder to sign a piece of paper demanding that your child be put at risk for cancer (therefore, punished for sex) than it is to opt in to protect your child from the cancer (divine punishment in Jill and Fran’s mind).

    Here it is. Amanda’s writing is much more eloquent than mine. http://pandagon.net/2007/02/04/agreeing-with-the-anti-choicers-its-a-lot-harder-to-look-someone-in-the-eye-before-you-hurt-her/#comments

  4. Not only that, SCAM, but isn’t the need to hold the threat of death over the heads of people who have unapproved sex kind of an implicit acknowledgment that their religious/philosophical arguments against sex aren’t convincing enough on their own?

  5. I don’t know whether I’m being successful or not, but the notion that these abstinence only programs discourage masturbation is sort of bizarre to say the least. I’m not trying to be a smart ass above, but if you want someone to abstain over time, it’s a healthy practice and one that might make it easier.

    And here’s where the distinction comes in between being for abstinence in young people and simply against sex. While I understand some people find masturbation immoral (every sperm is sacred), treating it as dirty when it’s the most normal activity in the world really does point out the problem with the entire agenda Eaton and Stanek push.

    Teaching young people about healthy relationships and medically accurate information is the best way to help them make the best choices. Sure, some will do dumb things, but others will wait until they are age appropriate and practice safe sex and with the appropriate education that teaches how a healthy relationship operates and offers a clear view of the complications of sex early in life gives the young person the tools to make informed decisions that fit within their values.

    Teaching them that all sexual feelings are bad outside of marriage is a way to make a basketcase. Teaching them to understand their bodies and a manner in which to cope with the mess that is the teenage hormone driven body provides the safest route all around.

  6. Being called an ass and vilified in the media is a modern-day form of scrubbing stone floors til your knees are bloody and self-flagellation til your back has no skin.

    It’s the same self-fulfilling woe-is-me martyr-as-victim attitude. And again, it’s a Middle Ages attitude at best.

  7. When children are taught the Pythagorean theorum in school, it is not assumed that the children will immediately engage in joyful activities in geometry but rather that they will be taught logical thought and someday may find a relevant case in their life in which to apply it, regardless of whether it’s in 4th grade or when they are 40. I view comprehensive sex ed the same way. When a girl is taught how to protect herself from STDs or pregancy, she is being taught information that may be useful right away (say on prom night) but also may be applied when she’s in her twenties or thirties, long after it is anyone’s business what she is doing or with whom.

  8. These women seem to be unable to comprehend the difference between promiscuous sex and any sex at all. Plus, it’s not as if celebrity before marriage is 100% effective.

  9. Plus, it’s not as if celebrity before marriage is 100% effective.

    Yeah, just look at Britney Spears.

  10. Narc,

    For social conservatives, any sex outside of marriage is “promiscuity” — even between two who are engaged to be married.

    This is also an underlying factor (among many) in why they fight so hard against allowing all couples to marry (ie, gay folks). If they (gay folks) aren’t married, they shouldn’t be having sex according to the social conservative dogma Fran, Jill, et al espouse.

    How libertarians ever ended up conjoined with these sorts of overbearing nanny-statists is unfathomable.

  11. You know,it’s kinda funny how the same NeoCons who leap forward
    to join the crowd condemning someone else for having affairs are sure
    quiet when it comes to their own!!
    They were sure quiet about Newt Gingrich two divorces and three marriages
    yet screamed loudly about Clinton’s Affairs!!!
    And it’s also funny how in ’92 they condemned Fictional Unwed Single Mother Murphy Brown for”Destroying Family Values”while allowing
    real life unwed mother Country Singer Tanya Tucker to perform at the
    GOP Convention in’92!!!
    And how last year,they condemned Brittney Spears’Sister Jamie Lynn for being an unwed mother and saying”She’s a Bad Role Model For Young Girls!!”yet praising Bristol Palin for being an unwed mother!!!

    Sorry folks,Double Standards are still Double Standards regardless of your Political Affilation!!!

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